Recipe by Chef Laura Frankel
1 cup short grain rice (I use Arborio)
4 cups water
2 cups sugar
½ cup rose water*
1/2 teaspoon saffron threads
2 egg yolks
2 tablespoons rice flour
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
Pinch of ground cardamom
Suggested garnishes: chopped pistachios, chopped almonds, fresh mint, pomegranate
Boil the rice with water, rose water, sugar and saffron threads until the rice is cooked completely and very soft.
Whisk the eggs yolks and rice flour together. Stir the mixture into the slightly cooled rice. Add the cinnamon and cardamom.
Chill thoroughly or serve warm. Garnish as desired.
*Rosewater is a distillation of rose petals. Rose oil is made from distilling crushed rose petals and is used in cosmetics and perfumes. Rosewater is a byproduct of this process.
Rosewater is commonly used in Persian and Indian recipes. It is used in desserts as well as savory dishes.
In Europe, rosewater is used to flavor marzipan, marshmallows and scones.
Rosewater is an old ingredient that is enjoying a resurgence of popularity. I encourage you to try it. I use it in Persian cooking, desserts, vinaigrettes and marinades. When first trying to cook with rosewater-go slow at first until you get a feel for it. A little goes a long way.
Rosewater can be found in many grocery stores, Persian or Middle Eastern stores and on line. Rosewater is a distillation and does not require hashgacha.
Recipe: kosher, side dish
Laura Frankel is the Executive Chef at Wolfgang Puck Kosher Catering at the Spertus Institute for Jewish studies in Chicago. She is the author of Jewish Cooking for All Seasons (Wiley) and Jewish Slow Cooker Recipes (Wiley).